Wet Basement Troubles: Get Help Now!

Has heavy rainfall lately cause you to be a victim of a wet basement? Whether it just be dampness or or even flooding, improper surface drainage is a common cause of basement leakage.

Your yard being sloped toward your home is one reason why the surface of your property is not draining correctly. This can be easily alleviated by re-grading your yard to slope away from your homes foundation. This diverts the surface water around the house.

Your rain gutter downspouts could also be poorly positioned, missing, or clogged. Or you could have a high water table problem. This occurs when the home is built too deeply in the ground, where water is consistently present throughout the year. Periods of high rainfall or underground springs cause the water table to rise during rainy seasons.

First and foremost, you should try to determine if your problem is water leaking or condensation forming on the cool surfaces. Condensation occurs when the warm, humid air comes into contact with cooler basement walls, floors, and also pipes.

Prevention is always the best approach when preventing your basement from getting wet. A professional basement waterproofing contractor can offer you a variety of solutions.

For more information about the causes of Wet Basements and Tips for Prevention, visit:
http://www.homeimprovementweb.com/information/how-to/dry-basement-tips.htm

Waterproofing Basement Walls: Costs and Options

The article linked below offers great insight to a homeowner looking to waterproof their basement. It starts with a simple test that the homeowner can do to help determine where the water might be coming in from, then offers different options for interior waterproofing, and exterior waterproofing. Due to the fact that New Jersey is a low lying state it’s very important for homeowners to be able to identify a wet basement. Water coming through the walls or floor of your basement can cause structural damage to your homes foundation, as well as open the possiblity for mold growth. Mold growth is not only detrimental to your property value but your families health and safety.

Read full article here

Got Mold?

Having mold issues? The problem may stem from excessive moisture in your home that’s been around for an extended period of time.

You can tell that you have a mold problem if you see visible growth on your painted walls. What may be growing on the wall’s opposite side is also a big concern, especially if a wall has been wet for a long period of time. Mold can originate from a burst pipe, large liquid spill that goes untreated, or leaky roofs and plumbing issues.

Want to do something about your mold issues?

The best way to solve your on-going mold problems is to have your home evaluated and removed by a certified professional.

These professionals can identify the sources of moisture, contain the damaged caused by the mold, remove the mold, and ensure the mold will not return.

For more information about Mold Remediation, visit: http://www.iicrc.org/consumers/care/mold-remediation/

 

Know the laws. Standard homeowners insurance policies do not cover damage to property from floods.

Your home owners insurance may not cover your property that has been damaged in a flood. You may require additional insurance and not even know it. The state of New Jersey defines a flood as any of the following:

i. The overflow of inland or tidal waters;
ii. The unusual and rapid accumulation or runoff of surface waters from any source;
iii. Mudslides (that is, mudflows) that are proximately caused by flooding and are akin to a river of liquid and flowing mud on the surfaces of normally dry land areas, including your premises, as when earth is carried by a current of water and deposited along the path of the current;

To learn more about about NJ State laws regarding flood damage and insurance policies please read this article:
Notice Regarding Flood Damage Coverage – N.J.A.C. 11:1-5.5

Flood Damage and Mold

Home flooding is a serious problem for many Americans. If your home has ever flooded then you know how time consuming and costly the repairs can be, and the risk of mold forming due to moisture being trapped in walls, basements and other areas of the home. If your home has been affected by flood damages from a hurricane, high water, or poor basement waterproofing, don’t hesitate to contact a professional.

Like many you may be asking yourself, What do I do after the water recedes?

First, go to your property and do a self assessment of damages, starting on the outside. If there is clear structural damage that you can see from the exterior of your home, do not enter. If there is no visible structural damage to the exterior of the home and you feel it is safe to enter, do so. Begin looking for things like buckled floor boards, water stained walls or ceilings, and standing water in the basement or crawlspaces. If there is still standing water in any part of the home do not attempt to use power tools, appliances, or turn electricity on or off to parts of the home, as you could be electrocuted or start a fire.

Once you have assessed the overall damages of the home it’s best to call your home owners and flood insurance companies and let them know of the damages, and the possibility of mold forming. Mold can be dangerous to your health both mental and psychical, exposure to mold can cause many aliments such as: sore throat, respiratory and allergy problems, as well as many others.

Once you have contacted your home owners and flood insurance companies you can start clearing out damaged items. Remove all easily moveable wet and damaged items including: cloths, carpets, furniture, boxes, beds, food, toys, linens, etc… These are all perfect spots for mold to form. Once you have removed the damaged items, and know it is safe to use electricity, place fans throughout the flood damaged home to let air circulate throughout the house. If you have any dehumidifiers this is the perfect time to use them, as they will pull any moisture that is forming out of the house, which will slow the formation of mold.

Once the house is cleared out and mostly dry it’s time to call a professional flood damage and mold removal company. Clearing out the home allows for a professional to properly asses all damages and possibilities of mold.

What the CDC says about Flood Damage

Reentering Your Flooded Home

When returning to a home that’s been flooded after natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, and floods, be aware that your house may be contaminated with mold or sewage, which can cause health risks for your family.

When You First Reenter Your Home

  • If you have standing water in your home and can turn off the main power from a dry location, then go ahead and turn off the power, even if it delays cleaning. If you must enter standing water to access the main power switch, then call an electrician to turn it off. NEVER turn power on or off yourself or use an electric tool or appliance while standing in water.
  • Have an electrician check the house’s electrical system before turning the power on again.
  • If the house has been closed up for several days, enter briefly to open doors and windows to let the house air out for awhile (at least 30 minutes) before you stay for any length of time.
  • If your home has been flooded and has been closed up for several days, presume your home has been contaminated with mold. (See Protect Yourself from Mold.)
  • If your home has been flooded, it also may be contaminated with sewage. (See After a Hurricane or Flood: Cleanup of Flood Water.)

Read More about what the CDC says about Flood Damage.

Flooding Due to Hurricane Sandy

Hurricane Sandy Evacuees In Flooded New Jersey Towns Describe Fast-Rising Water

MOONACHIE, N.J. –- The first signs of trouble were the car alarms: Dozens of them, all going off at once, just after midnight at Hurricane Sandy’s peak.

Then it was the smell of gasoline.

Jeanette Capers peered out her window to see floodwaters engulfing cars parked on the streets, causing oil and gas to seep out. Neighbors were screaming, some trying frantically to move cars to higher ground in advance of the cascade of fast-rising water.

Derek Ciaschi ran shirtless into the waters and successfully moved his vehicle up the hill. But by that time, the water was chest-high, and the current was too strong for him to return home.

“Nobody saw it coming,” Ciaschi said.

Read More about the Flooding from Hurricane Sandy.

Why is mold a health concern?

Indoor mold can trigger allergies or allergy-like symptoms affecting the upper respiratory system. Although other, more serious problems may occur if people are exposed to very high levels of mold, the most common complaints are:

  • nasal and sinus congestion
  • cough
  • wheeze/breathing difficulties
  • sore throat
  • skin and eye irritation
  • upper respiratory infections (including sinus infections)

The effect of mold on different people can vary widely. However, long-term exposure to high levels from indoor mold growth can eventually be unhealthy for anyone. The following groups of people may be at greater risk than others:

  • infants, children and the elderly
  • individuals with respiratory conditions or sensitivities such as severe indoor allergies and asthma
  • persons with weakened immune systems (for example, people with HIV infection, chemotherapy patients, organ transplant recipients)

MDH recommends that you consult a medical professional if you feel your health is being affected by a moldy environment.

In addition to health complaints, mold damages building materials, goods, or furnishings when it grows on them. Mold growth and moisture may eventually compromise the building’s structural integrity. Because of potential health concerns and damage to property, molds should not be allowed to grow and multiply indoors.

Read More on the risks of mold from the Minnesota Department of Health.

Can Basement Condensation Destroy Your Home?

If you are considering remodeling or finishing your basement, the first thing you needs to do is ensure that there are no problems with humidity or dampness. Basement dampness is a problem that is not uncommon to homeowners. Even if you aren’t finishing your basement, this is not a problem you should ignore, as it can then turn into a much more costly problem.

Read more: http://www.servicemagic.com/article.show.Can-Basement-Condensation-Destroy-Your-Home.11021.html#ixzz24g7nZbAz

Identifying causes of a leaky basement

A wet basement turns out to be a nightmare for the homeowner who is concerned about the value of his property. Seasonal rainfalls produce their own damages, as a homeowner has to deal with unpleasant side effects and consequences brought about by such rainfalls. A wide range of problems, from dampness to flooding haunt the homeowner even in his dreams.

Read more: Identifying Causes of Basement Leakage